Friday, December 28, 2012

Online Dating: (re)Post II


Shopping. But First, An Explanation.

Week 2 has passed. And it's been an accumulating-ly interesting experience. I'll tell you all about it, including - shockingly - my first (online) date, but first: an explanation.
The Window Shopper persona does describe me well. I am a hopeless romantic and I do believe in fate. I think that the universe will send you on your way and into love when it is ready - not when you are - and thus, online dating might just be a lesson in futility for those who take it too seriously. That might seem cynical to some, but it is simply my personal belief that we are all Fate's bitches. And when the time is right, *he will find me and no amount of looking will take me to him. *He, of course, being my "soul mate". (Yes, I believe in that too.)
With that said, I have made my way to love - or rather the Universe has sent it to me - three times in my life. I was 17 the first time I fell in love: It was fast and ferocious and ended in absolute heartbreak in mere months, when he went back to his ex (who he described to me as psycho) and proposed her four months later. (They divorced after a few years.) About eight months later, I began to date the next man I loved. We dated for nearly three years - till it ended with my total devastation...continued on a bit later (if you know what I mean) and ended when I was the devastator. About a year after our official break up I started to date the man I now refer to as The Ex. We were together for five years; we lived together for three. (Six months of which we were broken up: I do not suggest this scenario.)
I think it is safe to surmise that I am, in fact, in love with love.
Love became a habit I had to break. I made a conscious decision that the time after The Ex would be spent alone, dating and gathering all these stories and experiences of which to share with my eventual children. In that time, I have never online dated - not because I judge it, per say - because I don't believe that it is the story that I want to have. What if oops! I did find my mate online - because the Universe is also a silly bitch, along with being controlling and stubborn - and then what a story that wouldn't be. So, then, I find it surprising that I went on my first online date last night.
Two months ago I told my mother that I would never online date and if she found me doing so to shoot me (or something just as melodramatic and if it happened, I would be 35 and seeking a sperm). Then, a month ago, when we decided to do the "Book Club", I declared on my (personal) blog "I have no intentions on going on any dates" and was simply there to watch from the observation deck of dating. So I find it strange that after a little over a week online, I agreed to a date. And after two weeks online, I went on the date. And, even more surprisingly, on the heels of week three, I actually enjoyed the date. It started with apple pie and hot toddies (I wasn't feeling well, but don't like to break commitments) and ended with a kiss. A good one.
Go figure.
I'm supposed to have another first date next week. And I begin to wonder how a person who takes love so seriously, can actually like a guy and just keep moving (or date more than one). Maybe I can't: A quagmire indeed.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

(Life &) Online Dating

Work and life and et cetera have been so insanely busy of late that I haven't barely had the time to think, let alone write.  Last week I worked at least a 12 hour day every day while (poorly) battling a flu that downed me for the weekend - and every moment prior since Monday that I wasn't at work. I'm back up and kicking again tho: Braving 12 hour days this week too, but now armed with an equipped immune system, despite a lingering cough and my complete inability to smell or taste anything (Day 6). I have, however, lost about 5 pounds since last week. Some might consider this preparation for Vegas - which I'll be going to after the holidays for work, but I'm considering it prep for next week. I plan to work from home and eat. A lot.

Last week I wasn't hungry due to the flu. Once I was, I lost my sense of taste and mostly out of stubbornness refuse to eat anything that might actually taste good because what's the damn point? I'll show that fried chicken who's boss: YOU'RE NOT GETTING EATEN ::shovels in more quinoa::.  I have, however gone through copious amount of gross and expired foods I'd collected over the past two years. So there's a positive, though later exclaimed: I JUST WANT TO EAT SOME MOTHER FUCKING PIZZA WITH SOME MOTHER FUCKING RANCH AND BE ABLE TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THAT AND MOLDY CARDBOARD!

Seriously though.

 I'm ready for my sense of smell and taste to come back now. I could stink to high heaven and not even know it. And like a booger hanging out of the nose, most people are too afraid of awkward to say anything. Me? I'm all: HEY, MISTER, I DON'T KNOW YOU BUT YOU GOT A BAT IN THE CAVE, MK.

I just got totally sidetracked. The point of all that is to say that I don't have time: Go figure. And the blog my friends and I had made when we began our little Book Club of online dating kinda fizzled because we busy people, yo. Also, I have given up on online dating. That shit is not for me. At all.

However, I did manage to go on some dates and while I was never interested before, I can certainly say this quenched any curiosity may have (ever) had about online dating. It will also make for a educated chapter in The Book.  While I'm busy with life,  allow me to present to you my short foray into online dating by sharing the blogs I managed to pen in the few months I could stomach the experience.

Here's number 1. (PS I'm "The Window Shopper" dating type according to the OkCupid quiz, which is actually stupid accurate.)

Window Shopping, Week 1 
So it's been a little over a week since I signed up for OkC. I have had probably 100s of visitors to my page and 75 messages: Three of which I found potentially interesting. It used to be four: We started a conversation last week about Running with Scissors, that I later gave up on, finding it only mildly interesting (the convo, not the book). 

The fourth dropped off yesterday when I conversation went as follows: 
Guy: Well hello again 
Me: Hello.  
Guy: How are you doing today? 
Me: Well. And yourself? 
Guy: Not so hot, just kind of relaxing. Been a bit of a stressful day, and tomorrow will be just as much fun.  
Me: Sorry to hear. Eat ice cream. It makes everything better.  
Guy: But I have no ice cream, are you buying? :P 
Me: Nope! Maybe throw some ice and milk in a bag - see what happens. haha.  
Guy: So mean, why not help me out? 

Here's the Window Shopper's advice, guys: No one wants to be your mother. No one wants to clean up after you. And no one, particularly a stranger you're trying to get to like you, wants to listen to you whine. Get your own damn ice cream and call your mother, is all I really wanted to type. Instead, radio silence. You're 28, cheer yourself up. Or find a hug. 
Or perhaps I should drop it down to two. Because I was having the best exchange between myself and this guy up until I got bored at work and typed a response that probably amused myself more than him, but really it was all a legit response to his correspondence. The debate topic about fat people being sent to an island to lose weight to save on health insurance from high school may have been too much (which, to be fair, was health clinic argument angled to piss off my teacher that I didn't like - but didn't tell him that).Who knows. Note to self: Keep responses 3 paragraphs or less. But what can I say? I like to write and I like to talk about myself. So I'll probably just continue to do whatever I want and listen to crickets.  
Otherwise the experience has been a positive one - minus one trolling 44 year old with only his torso pictured who called me that was an insult. I'm getting much more actual, positive attention once they read my profile. (I say "actual" because I'm hoot, hollered and whistled at all the time real life, but "actual" dates...not so much.) It's some how liberating, validating and sort of overwhelming all at once. It's great to get messages from people who actually like what you have to say (and photos while camping with no makeup) versus just judging blonde hair and a big rack (in person) at stereotypical face value, and then trying to win you over  Has our courtship turned viral? Have we met the 1950s wooing all over but Internet plays matchmaker? Either way, it's a really good ego fluff. 
And then I wonder - since I was asked to drinks by one of the three - what to do in this situation since I'm not, in fact, seeking any type of relationship at the moment. Earlier in the year, I put myself on a sabbatical until at least October. I have allowed myself casual dating, but I think some of the men on the site are actually looking for something serious; real. I am both of those things - hopeless romantic extraordinaire - but not right now. So how do I handle that...

Friday, December 7, 2012

Answer: Zero

Question: Number of fucks given?

As I walked through the metal detectors, onto the property adjacent to the White House, a group of friends giggled as they heard my response to my friend. “Oh! In our meeting this morning the CEO decided we should start to make dildos because it fits so well with our company name.” This, of course, in response to my friend exclaiming “OH GOOD, THEY DIDN'T TAKE YOUR DILDO” after my purse, sans dildo, was returned, post-search, while entering the premises to watch the Obama's light the National Christmas Tree surrounded by caroling and children. I clearly remained unembarrassed and instead chose to continue the dildo discussion, in public earshot.

It was at this point that I realized – more than ever – that I have the filter of an 80 year old woman. And anything that comes out of my mouth in public is for the amusement of the general populace – or just that small ground standing outside of the metal detector tents. But mostly, just to amuse myself. I have a filter, I confessed to a guy who has appeared to have taken an interest in me, I just chose not to use it. I amuse myself first and foremost. "Best way to be. Couldn't agree more," he replied.

I used to say “I can’t wait to be old, so I can just say whatever I want”. Apparently, my mom was right; I’m impatient. Or perhaps, just wise beyond my years. Wise beyond my years, yes; that sounds so much better than “not giving a fuck”. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Reflection in a Mirrored Ceiling

All day long, I sat perplexed: How is it almost December, I wondered. 

"I can't believe it's almost December," I said to coworker and friends on repeat, still unable to grasp that the year has passed so fast and yet, in each marked event, so entirely slow.


"Do you like what they did in here," a stranger in the elevator asked me this morning as she rode up with me, accidentally going up when she meant to go down.

"No," I admitted, "I liked to look up and check my face in the reflection," I continued as we both tilted our heads to look above us and see a once reflective ceiling was now matte. "And now I can't do that anymore". 

She chuckled and wished me a good day as I exited to my floor, returning to work after a restful Thanksgiving break, wondering all day long just when did it become the year's end? Where did it go? And I think back to each time I looked up at that reflection in the elevator and how many faces and changes and loves and loses I've gone through - not just in this year, but in these five year's past.


I'm not ready to revisit the events of this year just yet; its still a few weeks too premature, but goodness gracious if I don't feel it propelled me absolutely forward. Like a slingshot of pulling angels; curious to see where I fall.

I have been resistant to love this year, I admit. But I feel I was open enough to it at the same time to let go and move on enough to love myself more than love itself. That, for me, is a huge accomplishment. The girl who fell in love with love, left love to find herself - once and for all. Admittedly still learning, I do believe I'm on the right path now: Re-enforced by a psychic two weeks ago in Miami. Also noted by her (in addition to being on the right path - after a while seeking it):
1. I am estranged from a parent; I didn't get the attention I wanted there 2. I am writing a book; something is stopping me at the moment, but keep going - it will be successful3. I can find love, but I can never keep it - I help these men and then they move on (improved); I was once married (incorrect, but I do refer to The Ex as the divorce) and he drug me into his "money" problems; which I corrected into depression, which turned into money problems for me
4. 2013 will be a prosperous year for me5. I am an extremely spiritual person; my abilities are getting stronger, but do not ignore them because they will not go away, 6. I can help people7. I have a negative energy and need and aura cleansing; this may have resulted in playing with a Ouija board as a kid8. I will find true love; the timeline is not know but it is a concern that haunts me and I will find true love; be patient, it's coming.

The energy in that room, unlike last year's psychic, I found to be entirely agitating. I left feeling deflated, annoyed and that everything in there was bad. Perhaps the negativity she picked up from me was simply the negative energy I picked up from her room. And that energy finally faded from me in hours (seriously hours) after leaving and I finally realized her reading was all good things. And totally accurate. Ouija board included - unfortunately. And that my dreams and visions and "abilities" had gotten so insane in recent weeks that I had predicted a friend's DUI stop and encouraged another to go to a doctor specifically for a condition that it turned out she had: A symptom-less condition, mind you. She is now getting the medical treatment she needs that she would have not otherwise gotten, and likely have had fatal results. 

With all of them items - book included, as well as it's temporary pause - all true, I took a moment to appreciate the term "true love" as my girlfriend - who was also read - admitted her jealousy of the word "true" missing from her own reading of her loves.

When this blog became all about matters of the heart, I'll never quite know. Even this entry was suppose to be about something else entirely, I'm sure. I did want to make note that after four men, 11 dates and one guy I cancelled on and never met, I removed myself from the observation deck of dating. It is at once an ego fluff and a tragic view of what's not out there and how very specifically picky I am - which also helped me come to this conclusion as well: How hard it is to find some you like who "gets" you and how lucky I am to have found it time and again, despite the pain in the loss. 

But recent events in this weird world of single and dating have reminded me of a past I've left behind with reason and thus, I have removed myself from the dating pool (having been leaning towards that anyways) as of last week. Ironically though, I find myself more inclined to fall in love than before. Nearly more open to sacrificing my time alone to share my bed with more than just my remotes again, then I was before strange things began to transpire (I hear you universe). Almost open, but terrified at the same time. And then all of these things I have found alone, I remain scared to lose. I fight to stay open-minded enough that online dating is not a reflection of my own reality and to remind myself that I was strong enough to pull myself away from HG to save me, even though, at the time, I wanted nothing more than to be forever close to him. Right there, I did it right: I was open to love, but aware of myself: I should write that memo to fear; I am my own sense of security.

While life is random with fast years composed of slowing ticking time, each moment is ours to own. No one can take that away from us. Love comes when it will on it's own terms, but I do believe that timing is everything times a million, not because second hands matter, but because what goes on in the heart hurts, heals and learns over time and that we have to be patched and open to accept it again. We have to be willing to give up ourselves and trust in the other person that they won't ask us to give up who we are alone to be together. Each moment is a reflection in a mirrored ceiling of an elevator; each second that passes changes who we are and takes us just one step closer to who we are meant to be. I'm glad I'm on the right path. I hope she's right.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Walking Into a Wall of Duh

It took months - and an episode of Ice Loves Coco - to realize:

He never broke my heart.­ He never had it. I never gave it to him. He gave me butterflies. I loved them. I nurtured them. And then he stole them from me. He killed them. All the beautiful butterflies he had born. And that broke my spirit. My heart simply re-acted. It is far too easy to fall for whimsy.


After PE, I was devastated. I chalked that up to it affecting my entire group of friends – since we shared them. I chalked it up to complete and utter embarrassment. I chalked it up to being one of the women I told myself I’d never be; fooled by a man-boy. In a sense, that was easy to move past; so many things to blame and it was nothing like love.

After HG, I was devastated. I had no idea why. Was I falling in love? Maybe. Was I there yet? No. I was careful. I was tip-toeing and testing. I was certain I wasn't going to end up on my face like I did with PE and be caught off guard, not listening to my intuition. So I listened and I ended it, completely secure in the idea that my decision to do so was the right one, yet finding no comfort in that certainly. For months, it plagued me. Why was I left so broken by a boy I knew for only a short time - who only proved to me that I had learned and grown from PE? Why was I devastated to be right? Why was it so hard to move forward and beyond? Why was I so completely and utterly stuck?


Last night I was watching a episode of Ice Loves Coco (don’t judge) and he said something to the effect of how amazing it is when two people find someone that doesn't only put up with them, but loves them despite all of their quirks. And when that happens, it is reason to celebrate.

[Edit: The episode was on again a few days after I posted this, so I recorded the audio,]

DING! After all the talk of butterflies last week, it finally dawned on me: HG had awakened butterflies – something I’d not experienced 7 years – and put all of them in my stomach at once with every kiss, touch, caress. And despite what a bad idea I thought it was initially, who can ignore that many fluttering wings?!

So, after realizing my initial apprehensions were right and I ended it, for months after, I still didn't feel like myself. Honestly, I thought about the failure of a relationship more than I should have - all while trying to figure out why I was still thinking about it (talk about an obnoxious cycle). It took 10 fucking months to realize that I had simply been mourning the loss of my butterflies. I mourned the loss of finding a person that meshed with my weirdness; each other's quirks we found endearing. It wasn't really about losing him; it was about losing the butterflies.

It makes so much sense now; like walking into a wall of duh. The past 12 years of falling in and out of love and lust makes so, so much sense. Butterflies are really wonderful things – though painfully hard to lose, as revelations would tell.

But quiet wings are not lost: One day they will flap again. And that's all anybody ever really needs to know. Keep chasing butterflies, kids.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Difference Between Hope and Faith (and butterflies)

This guy friend; we've known each other for a while, but only recently began to put time into building a friendship. We're similar in the sense that we're particular who we fancy and date with purpose and reason and that neither of us have found someone recently who has made us feel that purpose. Today, we had a conversation. In speaking about past relationships, this is part of it:

me:  ya. your biggest mistake will be your greatest asset. 
ER:  So how do you get around biggest mistake is biggest asset??? Vicious circle much? 
me:  hahaha. there is no circumventing. everything you've gone through just takes you where you need to be. you have to deal. 
ER:  Haha.As silly as this is I see tons of parallels to HIMYM me:  as silly as what is?
ER: Summation: Meets/dates plenty of girls who are close but not quite right ... Loses faith along the way ... Holds out hope that it's out there. 
me:  Ya. We're the Ted fuckin Mosby's of the world. it sucks. but the story is awesome.if it makes you feel any better, i thought I was getting married in my early 20s, i was most upset that i never got to collect any "stories". so consider it a good thing. : ) 
ER:  Non parallel to show to is the one thing that keeps me going is watching my step dad (father) treat my mom the same way after 25 years ... He worships the ground that she walks on 
me:  I want THAT. And I"m holding out for it. I'm so glad you say it exists. 
Because sometimes I'm not so sure. 
ER:  It does... But it's not always appreciated... 
me:  I want that kind of love that when he dies, I die. No matter how long I live. 
ER:  Yes 
me:  I'm told I'm overreaching with this desire. I'm not sure I care. Anything else would feel like settling. 
ER:  Agreed .... And that's while ill be happier than everyone else .... Some people don't care .. I do. 
me:  I care about it probably more than anything. You can take anything away from me and as long as I have true love, I'll be happy. I've thought this for as long as I can remember. Some people don't believe in soul mates. I absolutely do. There is destiny and fate as much as there is hope and faith.

Faith lets us hold out for - and on to - the things hope lets us desire. I hope that kind of love exists for me. I will wait, because I have faith that it does. 


Earlier, on a somewhat related topic - concerning dating this guy I'm not sure about:

C: why do you worry about it?
me: cause i don't want to waste his time
C: well isn't any relationship that doesn't end in marriage a "waste of time"? I mean, it's not, but all the same, you never know when you're in it.  
me: not if it teaches you something; takes you somewhere else. but what if you go into that knowing it.
C: well you'd probably never go into relationships. that's where not knowing in life is the best.
me: "there's something about you i dont like and i can't put my finger on it so chances are if i can't pin point it, its staying"
C: that's how you feel about him?
me: on sunday, yea.
C: hmm. well you are a libra. and you will go back and forth
me: not when there's certainty
C: right but what gives you that certainty?
me: butterflies.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

In keeping...

I don't want these days to end.

The ones I hated. The ones that broke my heart. The ones that wounded me. The ones that left me standing in the middle of a room crying alone with my face in my hands.

Friday, October 12, 2012


Whoop. Nope. Back to this!

This weekend consists of taking off work early, driving to Baltimore, running a half marathon (if my sprained ankle from twisting it in 5 inch heels during birthday festivities lets me ::knocks on wood::), partying in a sister city and horseback riding on a 73 degree high and sunny fall Sunday. Best part is, no one to answer to; no one to miss. And I still have the random ego-fluffing from a number of "gentleman callers" as Blanche Devereaux would put it. 

Speaking of, I got this message in my inbox today on okc: You are so beautiful. I find it really hard to believe that you are single unless it is by choice, because someone didn't treat you right. Would you be interested in getting to know each other better? 

Ah, the age old "what is wrong with you" question in disguise. Correct, good sir, I am single by choice. I'm glad that's still an option; suppose I didn't even realize it was an box I could acceptably check. Sweet! And there's a hilarious bunch of us. Sweeter!

Also, 16 minutes before that one, this one rolled in: Oh my wow, you are the definition of BREATHTAKING

Breathtaking?! Me? Okay, yes. I will take breathtaking any day of the week. I hope he wasn't a Seinfeld fan. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Wake up, Sunday

::Wake up, Sunday:: Surprisingly chipper, but likely just still drunk. I get a text from a guy I don't quite know and try to convince him to drive 45 minutes to make me waffles. No dice. Online dating is clearly just a sham and there's no such think as an easy waffle. Even on your birthday. 

My friend who took care of me and got me home the night before - after the birthday festivities - leaves. I would later text him to find out why my mouth tasted like pizza. "You had pizza last night.". Well, that explains that.

Mid-day, I would request that my birthday "Pizza Party" turn into a Thai food delivery party because that fucking taste of stale, drunk, vodka pizza would never leave my mouth; even after brushing, brunch, Pepto Bismol and an entire box of Wintergreen Altoids. At that point, I thought I would throw up if I tasted anything that was remotely pizza-like, given the state of my mouth for the past 10 hours. That would not have been a sexy kiss.

But I didn't know. When I got up all I knew was 1. It was my birthday and 2. food. This is a good sign to wake up from your own birthday party not on the floor of a bathroom and in your own bed...and actually hungry and able to eat. My hangovers take the form of nausea and I usually spend the day trying to feed it better...with mixed results. After the waffle delivery failed, I called my girlfriend "Get up. It's time for brunch!" A buffet of delicious, it was. And then, four hours later, I thought I was going to hurl on the floor of her car: All of that delicious crab leg, biscuits and gravy and fruit and cheesecake mess...and maybe some old pizza, all while on our way to get another ice cream cake. Because that's all I wanted for my birthday and the slice the night before, while a heavenly surprise, only wet my palette for more. And apparently I am not fazed by the need to vomit when ice cream cake is involved.

When it comes to certain things for me, self control does not exist. DQ ice cream cake is one of those things. And apparently Altoids.

The day was spent watching one of my favorite movies and eating ice cream cake, reminiscing about the night before and assessing my bruises. Its been so many years since a birthday made me feel special; and I am well-aware I have my gracious friends - my chosen family - to thank. And while the appeal of a hangover never existed, it's kind of losing it's charm. I have one year left to test every hangover remedy ever, but I think after 30 it's probably not considered cute anymore. 

"I'm okay with that," she thinks. And merrily strolls into the arms of Twenty Nine...

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Like Really Real

10/08/12 - Evening: I just wrote myself a note on a post-it that was meant for something entirely different.

As I went to write an actual memo, listening to this song, I was suddenly smacked in the face with the thought: I’m ready to fall in love again. And then I went to write that and a question came out. I couldn't write it down for certain. It is still a question at the hands of my pen.

So then I stopped to ponder and wonder that maybe it was just the song – whose live version I find so gut-punchingly moving and I don’t know why. Or the movement of the stars towards something and out of life-lesson mode. Or the first chill of winter curling it's fingers and toes around the corner of this year. Or the fact that an old coworker - who was my fellow single something - came by today with his five month old (who isn't someone you imagine with babies) and my ovaries ached for a second. For the first three years we worked together, he went on about his singledom and how he may never get married and then one day he came back in the middle of winter and said he had spent time with a girl he knew from college...and I knew he would never be single again. Two years later and they’re married with a kid.

Life can go on for so long, so unchanging to the outside world of oneself, and then in a matter of seconds and then monumental months EVERYTHING is different. I am now at a point in my life where the idea of all of that change so suddenly scares the living daylights out of me. Or perhaps I have never been a big fan of change, but never took the time to notice before. Or, perhaps, I've never been quite so content, and scared that one rock in the wheel will shut down the system and I end up face down on the pavement with my Rollerblade wheels still spinning in the air. Or perhaps...I’m just a weenie.

I can’t decide.

Nor, apparently, can I decide if I am actually prepared for love again. It’s been so long now since last I fell in love. Fall 2004 was the last time. The last first time I said 'I love you' was in March of 2005. (College offers a timeline for everything when you think of life in semesters.) So we’re heading into eight years since the last time I fell into love. What if I forgot how to? And even if I wanted to end up face-in-the-pavement, ass-in-the-air in love, what about my life alone? What happens to that then? And why am I over-thinking this so much when I have been in love three times in my life and each of those I willingly stumbled into without a second thought? This is like seven thoughts and there isn't even a viable prospect in sight – only the idea that I may be willing again.

What has become of my heart? Has it been warped by the whiplash of the last five years? Is this a natural progression with age? Or perhaps it knows before my mind, that next time it could be real. Like really real. And I suppose that’s a scary concept – even at twenty nine. 

How do I love more than just me now when I've learned to love myself so much? Are we allowed to admit those things? Self-love; I don’t know. But there it is - concerns and all.

Monday, October 8, 2012


Suddenly autumn comes and it's cold again. A feeling of survival burying beneath the fallen leaves, waiting to unearth once winter fades. Blankets added; the heft of the fabric weight and the comfort of a warm bed feels so much more welcoming than months passed. Outside was so much more appealing then. Now, the winter is coming and the sun fades back behind clouds and leafless trees; skin transitions to pale and each species adapts to look like the season upon us. The world scurries back inside. Wardrobe changes and man-made heat again become regular elements of a household once warm with the sweltering sun of summer. Tucked away under blankets with heaters, afraid of the tinge of cold so fast - humans take time to adapt - the world hides inside afraid of the season. The cyclical transition strikes anew. We're unprepared. Suddenly, autumn comes and it's cold again.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Twenty Nine, At Saturn's End

Well, that time has come again, dear friends. I'm getting older. Not that I wasn't older since yesterday or even since I just typed the world "yesterday". Wait ... okay, I'm older again. But that fateful day is again upon us that marks the time, the year, and the triumph that I am, indeed, a document-able year older. And this time, I am confident to say much wiser, as well.

This weekend not only marks my 29th year - my last year as a 20-something, here we go!, but also it marks the end of Saturn's retrograde through Libra::

But the biggest birthday present arrives on October 6, when challenging Saturn leaves your sign after three long years. Since October 2009, Saturn’s turned your life into a personal identity boot camp, pushing you to reinvent from the ground up. Look back to who you were back then: were you a wallflower, a people-pleaser, a fence-sitter? Have you become more bold, decisive and prone to follow your internal compass? Viva la difference! During this period, you’ve added structure, new habits, learned self-reliance—and are far stronger for it. Saturn has been teaching you how to solve your own dilemmas, instead of grabbing your phone and dialing your go-to pal for advice or support. Now, you consult your inner voice first. Please pause to congratulate yourself: this accomplishment is no small feat for your sign, which rules the zodiac’s partnership house. You’re a natural collaborator, most comfortable with “we”-time than “me”-time. Perhaps as the result of some hair-raising, nail-biting or teeth-grinding experiences, Saturn forced you become your own champion. Now that’s some personal growth.

and it was. Now we're here (::puts on mortarboard::):

Here’s the good news: Saturn’s laborious three-year visit gave you a chance to trade your silken-voiced seductions and antiquated avoidance tactics for authenticity and hard-won self-awareness. Yep, you got real, with yourself and others. Now, you have buckets of wisdom to share. (See, we told you there were endless reasons to celebrate!) [...] by now “the truth shall set you free” means a lot more than bumper sticker wisdom. Consider yourself liberated. 
On October 6, structured Saturn moves into Scorpio, your second house of work, money and self-esteem, for the next three years. Now that you’re clear on who you are, it’s time to root your new identity into some concrete forms, like, say, a bigger paycheck. The second house and Saturn both help you prioritize (a boon for notoriously indecisive Libras). Between now and September 2015, you’ll gradually pinpoint what’s most important to you: is it rising in your career? Setting the world on fire? Finding your true love? Having a bambino or two? Once your priorities are clear, make decisions accordingly, building your life around these values and priorities. Saturn in Scorpio helps you focus on depth rather than breadth.

You may believe in the stars or you may not, but I have found astrology to be completely on point - particularly over the past three years - much to my own chagrin. And while it makes me a little nervous to head into new life territories and move on from what I've become acclimated to, as well as noting that my moon sign (which represents inner self and emotion) is also Scorpio, this is a day I have been looking forward to for some time. Although now that it's here, I'm slightly sad to see it go --- slightly, because I do feel I have overcome, found myself and experienced more in three years than I ever could have imagined. 

Three years ago I had just moved out from living with The Ex ; I was acclimating to living with a stranger; I was finding myself again and making new friends. And the amazing things and stories and WTF moments grew from there - exponentially.  I hope it keeps on going this way...but perhaps with less hard-hitting lessons. Then again, I know so much more now than I did back then and I feel so much stronger and self-aware, so maybe I won't fall quite so hard on my own face.

I'll see you in Scorp, Saturn. We'll see where that takes us. Thanks for the ass-kicking...dick. :)

Monday, October 1, 2012

The Power of Full Moons: "Best of luck, kid."

It would be difficult to impossible to sum up last week quite quickly, but I’m going to do my best. I would like to preface this by reminding everyone that my Saturn retrograde is due to exit my sign this weekend. And I’m nearly convinced that all these things are going on as part of that shift. The stars also suggested last week that I would encounter items of closure, particularly in relationships – being romantic, platonic or professional. And lastly, said: "At the end of the month, a high-powered Aries full moon lights up your seventh house of committed partnerships. A relationship that had a turning point in April, around the Aries new moon, comes full circle now."

 As PI would later put it, “Dickens was writing your Saturday…you had a sexual Christmas Carol going on.”

First, let me preface this by saying that earlier in the week 1. MH, a guy from online dating I’d been kind of seeing, but had no real interest in stopped talking to me because on Sunday I suggested he go home and not sleep at my house, which he totally invited himself to do, which at first I agreed to because hi. I like to spoon. I like to kiss. And don’t really tie anything to someone sharing a bed – but then he waffled about leaving (at least 4 times he said “I’m leaving”. Then “I’m staying.” “I’m leaving.” “Okay, I’ll stay.”) It was like goodbyes by Anne Heche. After all this, I decided wanted to sleep well and suggested he go home and would thank me tomorrow. And gave him a kiss before going. To which he responded. “Are you fucking with me”. Yes. I’m fucking with you. I like to cuddle. I like to kiss. I also like to sleep in my bed alone before a long week. But sure, ya, I'm just fucking with you.

Can you hear my eyes roll?

So I guess he decided to pout. And as I discussed with a girlfriend the next day: eventually he was getting the boot, so he gave himself his own out. Works for me. So that’s the end of that.

Also, 2. Last week HG started chatting me up again. He had briefly contacted me the week before and I had discussed with a girlfriend how uncomfortable it made me: Like I was talking to a stranger I felt like I should know, but didn’t. Last week was more of a comfortable conversation. So, that's nice, I suppose.

And then 3. The Ex emailed me back about a situation that happened months ago. He randomly texted me – we don’t talk much since he started dating the last girl, I assume – and I ended the conversation “don’t be a stranger” to which he replied “I will” and I went off. Because, well, this. And vodka. So I finally remembered to reply to his email and say thanks and explain that this is why I got upset. His response was pleasant and added that he is engaged. "Good" was my first thought. It was never my intent to break both of our hearts so that we could end up alone. I’m happy that he found someone. My second thought was that it bothered me that he seemed hesitant to tell me because I would be upset because I’m almost 29 and single. I chose this.

So, world, not every 29 year old wants to be married, mk?

So then the culmination of a week of so much weird happened on the full moon on Saturday. After an 11 mile training run, I went kayaking with friend and roommate of PE (who had subtly and not-so-subtly been attempting to get in my pants on and off since NYE), then out with GFC in an area we both realized we were heading to that night, so he said he’d meet up with me and maybe "borrow my bed" (uh-huh) after the bars so he was closer to where he needed to be in the morning. See also: Spooning.

And it started out like this: We walked in the bar and upstairs and I saw the side of the head of PE. He didn't see me and in a very HIMYM moment I immediately turned around, ducked and walked back down the stairs. Meanwhile, my girlfriend has no idea and is at the stop of the steps yelling down to me "No, that's the bartender we know!" So I signal for her to come down the steps and say "I think that's [PE] up there". She goes up to check; comes down to confirm. We relocate to the back bar downstairs where another bartender we know is usually working (till and we, or I rather, get tipsy enough to not care about the awkward situation that will be upstairs). He is. And we are immediately 1. hit on and 2. and more importantly, given free drinks and shots. It was like bugs to a fly strip. I felt like I was living a sitcom.

 I then texted the guy I went kayaking with and asked if he was out with PE. He replied "No, is he out?".

"He's here," I responded. He laughed and later showed up to the surprise of his roommate. After a bit, we did go upstairs, now with a strange entourage of guys really hoping to take either of us home – one of which would later pout. Why? Well…let me tell you.

Remember Football guy from February? We had chatted via text until April and then crickets, which was fine; what did I care? Well he texted me Labor Day weekend (at 2am) that he was in town. I was out of town; told him try again. On Saturday he texted me; he was in the area and out on the other side of DC. I told him the area I was – expecting to hear “Oh maybe next time.” About 30 minutes later, he texts that he’s next door to where I am and I tell him to come to our bar. He does.

I talk to him, the guy that had followed me upstairs (strangely assuming I would go home with him; of which I gave no indication) is now throwing a fit “he stomped around and I’m pretty sure his nostrils were flaring”, my girlfriend later recounted.

So now my kayaking friend (who is waiting to see if he can get into my pants bed) is standing against the wall, well-aware his convenience sex bed is now in jeopardy, and next to his roommate (who’s game we clearly crashed) that I used to date (or something like it). The other guy is throwing a fit (nostrils flaring, I'm later told), while I'm talking to this rando I met on a sidewalk 7 months ago.

Time and drinks pass and next thing I know, I’m outside my house on the sidewalk. FG had paid for a cab. We’re making out outside when he stops, looks at me and says: "I have to be honest. I have a girlfriend. I should go."

Slightly dumbfounded and pretty annoyed, I go back to my house and mildly scold him for being an idiot via text. YOU CHASED ME DOWN, you ridiculous turd, I thought. He texts back that night overly and weirdly apologetic about that situation (sounding on his side like he was breaking up with a girl he’s known forever).

What. I mean wait. WHAT?! This weirdness lasts a little longer. I say goodbye. I pass out.

I wake up and realize that the lying was annoying, but I suppose that it’s respectable that he has this new girlfriend he wants to respect. I text him today to tell him that I’m not upset with him because we all do dumb shit some time. And this, my loves, is the exchange that followed:


And then I shit my pants* because WHO DOES THAT. And who says that?! AND HE'S HAD A GIRLFRIEND ALL ALONG?! ...and he thinks he's going to marry her. Um... That poor girl. And since when is being an immature douche a psychological disorder?!


This weird explanation didn't even make sense. It doesn't match up with the strange texts from night before. Or months before or when he proposed in March that I come over to his house to spoon while I was in town. How was he going to explain that visit to his live-in girlfriend?! Lord only knows who he's trying to convince because I don't even think he buys what he's selling. So, I laughed and rolled my eyes - because I've come to know his type - and ended the exchange with: Well anyways. Best of luck, kid.

So that's that story. Sort of hilarious. Oh Universe, you cockblock. That was an interesting, surprise prediction by the stars...and a throwback for the books. But it is becoming more and more clear that the universe is up to something and I’m growing increasingly curious as to what it is that it has in store. For the time being, I rather enjoy the musings…much to my own surprise.

*by shit my pants, I mean laugh and share the new knowledge to those aware of the story, which received this response: if i didn't actually know you, i don't think that i would believe that all those things could happen to you.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Will Not Disappoint

I stumbled upon it a couple of weeks ago and have since fallen in love this this new style and Kishi Bashi's undeniable artistry. I am so excited that just days after discovering and dowloading his album in early September, that I found out he will be in Baltimore, playing a free show outside! in beautiful 75 degree weather for FREE! in four days. This was my Monday. Tonight I'm so excited to get to see him live. Did I mention it was free?  If this guy doesn't make it big, I have lost faith in the musical tastes of our generation.

If you only have a moment, start this video at 6:15. You should be entranced by the end. I promise, you will not have wasted those 12 minutes.

If you have some more time, the concert below is fucking great. He's one of those musicians where you listen and at first think "eh" and the more you listen, the more brilliant it gets. Undoubtedly, my favorite kind of music.

If he's not brilliant to your ears, then there's something wrong with your heart. I am so looking forward to tonight. It feels like a karmic reward; nice when things just fall together at just the right time.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The One Where Someone Threw a Rock

The past few weeks have been an enormous flurry of travel. Remember the time I said I was going to write and post photos all about New Zealand and then didn't have yet to? It's something like that.

After Mexico, I was all over the place: Twice to PA for family birthdays (gram turned 80 and the twins are 1! -- and adorable.), north for a friend's wedding, Dewey Beach for a single people's fun weekend - undoubtedly a good time, and then VA Beach for a 4 day weekend and a half-marathon, and after four days back, a week in Savannah, then leaving a day early to fly back to DC to road trip up to Pittsburgh for a football game and tailgate. (And we won!) This weekend will be the first I've been home since August 11th, although last weekend was almost derailed and I almost had to stay home and miss the game. Why, you ask: Because while in Savannah, on a nice family vacation, some jackass threw a rock through my window.

Yes, this SAME EXACT window: One year and 17 days later, looked like this:

Last year, this happened and the first person I called was my mom...sobbing. I then called the insurance companies and eventually the glass company. Last week I thought quickly on my feet - I had exactly 3 hours to drive home, unpack from the week and repack for the weekend and meet my friends for our four hour road trip: I called the glass company (then insurance companies and quickly my mum, not sobbing), made arrangements to drop off my car for the weekend - grabbing my 2nd pair of keys when I repacked, so I could pick it up while they were closed Sunday, when we got back - I put my rear foot mat on my drivers seat to avoid a glassy bum, called my friend who was driving and asked if he could pick me up in a different place (still on they way), drove home, unpacked/repacked and headed into traffic; dropping off my car five minutes before close. I then walked up to road (with armfuls of stuff) towards my office so I was easier to be picked up and we could get on our way north - for a fun weekend, despite a crappy homecoming - and it was something like this: 

The weekend was great. The crisis was averted. I didn't let this spoil it; in fact, at times I totally forgot (and that my dresser, while repacking, broke into 3 5 pieces.) Sure, I was pissed at first that someone had thrown a rock through my window for no reason - nothing was taken. (In the photo above, you can see the rock, which still resides in my car - even after the auto glass guys vacuumed everything out, they left the rock. What a sweet memento!) Losing the money sucks, especially after having just replaced it, but this morning I wondered: What are the chances of that same window breaking twice? What's the point, Universe?

And then I realized, a year ago the same thing broke me down: A broken window broke me into pieces. And this year, just 382 days later, it was just a window; just a problem to be solved. Just last year I was weak, withered and broken and, perhaps, this broken window shattered again to remind me that things get put back together and the repairs from what once was shattered stops the rain from coming in again. 

I am in a good place now; nearly such a wonderful place. It took an asshole with a rock and a broken window to prove that to me. Life is so sublimely strange sometimes.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Living Art

I work with this one guy: When he asks me to create a graphic piece – no matter how simple – he always seems afraid to tell me what he dislikes. “That will work” followed by a “but” usually happens. Actually, I work with all men (and one other female) and they all started out this way. I've had to encourage them to disapprove. They are engineers, so to them, I’m the artist; the creative mind – too fragile to insult the work - but I don’t see myself that way and welcome anything that leads to brainstorming. Sure, when they need artwork, I get into my CreativeSuite and create, but I don’t consider myself an “artist” - there are others in the world far more artistic than I am - and my first draft is rarely ever as good as what I come up with after someone hates my work with specific detail – or just general disdain.


Once in college I had this painting class. The professor was a hard ass. He never liked my work. For my final, I ignored his advice and did what I wanted. I was happy with the outcome; he hated it. I was proud of it. I gave it to my mother for Christmas that year. She hung it in the basement. I hate that piece now. I wonder whose eyes I was looking through as I created it sometimes.


I went on a date last night. He asked me the last time I was in love. I thought back and answered: “2008”.

“Me too,” he replied. “That’s a long time. Do you think we’re broken?”

Without hesitation I responded, "No. Was I broken after it? Yes. Have I been broken before? Yes. I don’t think that it was love if it didn’t break you”. I continued, “But I’m a better now because I have been broken in the past”.

He paused for a moment and said, “I agree. I’m just picky, I think.”

"Me too."


This morning after I received the that will work, but email, I opened InDesign and reworked the piece with the little bit of negative feedback I was given. I sent it back to him. “Perfect!” he replied.

Even if truths hurt; even if you really love something in the moment, it might not be best – and just end up in your mom’s basement. Criticism might sting, but opens our eyes to see what we didn’t before and our minds to better resolves. And then, it gets better.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Politics and Women

This is how I feel about politicians and women's "rights":

Men really need to get a hobby. And campaigns and politics really need to stick to economics and the state of the Union. This POTUS race is clearly focusing on women for the vote. Ignore the focus groups saying we're the swing and leave our bodies alone. It's getting old. Stop it. Just stop. "No uterus, no opinion".

How about we talk about the federal deficit? Or welfare? Or taxes? Or illegals? Or anything else that is slightly relevant to the good of the people? Male politicians making choices about women's bodies is the equivalent of Paris Hilton trying to change her oil - I'm sure she knows it's there, but she has no idea what to do with it.

If women were in office we wouldn't be trying to tell men what to do with their balls. Go grow a pair, dudes. And pick a new topic.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Ego Fluffed, Stigma and All

This entire thing is so much more entertaining than I originally anticipated. And talking about it with my friends gives it an added bonus of entertainment and comparisons. And having guys in the "Book Club" who have dated both solely offline and on/offline has given me some very interesting insight.

I have been on for about a week now. I have had about 75 people message me and countless others judge view my profile. It's a little weird to think that all of these people are out there, looking at what you have to say, but so far the response is almost all positive: You're hot; you're pretty; you're obviously beautiful; your pictures are really entertaining; you seems like a really cool girl; your profile is great; you're one of my favorite people on here. Hello and my ego is fluffed.

Granted, some of these men look like their faces got caught in a drain; others are too young, too old, some are way too short. However, it's nice to hear. It's nice to get a little virtual validation from people who are judging me from what I have to say and not just who I am at a bar on Saturday night; that I'm all of these wonderful, interesting (and attractive) things once judged beyond the exterior. Seriously, who doesn't love that? (Be real. Saying you don't like positive, affirming attention is like saying you have never picked your nose. We are human - and there's a reason your finger is the same size as your nostril.)

Sure, there have been a few guys that will message me, I message back and then crickets, but lets be real - this is online dating, it's not real. It's an entertaining way to see that even though you go to the bars and give up and think that everyone that's attractive is douche or that everyone normal is taken, it's not true. There are other people out there just as lost as you.

There are also a lot of people that look like the typical person you expect to find from online dating. On Tuesday I had a guy message me "hi let's meet for tea", who I described as "his face looks like his lips got in a fight with his penis pump and lost". That's mean!, you might say, Internet World, but, come on, he can't hear me. This part is half the fun.

So far I've had one troll. He was 44. His only insult was to call me 35. Men are idiots. If the only insult you can think of is to tell me I look older than I am, then I'm doing something very, very right. Pick on something I'm insecure about and you might get to me, but my age - no, I'm 28. Fact. That's not subjective, sir.

All in all, so far I'm glad I sucked it up and signed up. It's teaching me a lot about interpersonal relationships: Both online and offline, from both the online community and talking about it with the "Book Club" members. And I know there's a stigma, but I think this is the perfect time to add this chapter to my story because I'm not seeking anything serious; it's just for shits and giggles...and ego fluffs.

It's interesting and entertaining (until I get bored with it and ADD on). And I thought the other night that maybe it will help me improve job/interview skills, because it forces practices of conditions I'm uncomfortable with. I suck at interviews - and one of the Veteran male BC members says each first meeting is just an interview, "not a date".

So then, here we are, practicing for life. Let's make it fun. Stigma and all.

Monday, August 6, 2012

The Observation Deck of Dating

Yesterday I had lunch with a friend – and past roommate, actually, who met me when I was in the middle of PE, saw me come out of it, was there through HG and has seen me rise past all of them and back into a certain lightness. The weight of so many things has become a burden of the past for me…and for her. We are both lighter, I remarked. And we both smiled a little; both at each other and for ourselves. We’re total opposites, but living together found ourselves helping the other through different things. Without being put together by the total randomness of life, we’d never have met – and it took a while for us to even talk despite living four feet away. But maybe that’s it gives us such a different outlook; perhaps it’s those kinds of black and white, oil and water, unexpected kindnesses that make the best kind of things in life. And so we discussed and I found myself realizing for the first time in my life that when I said “I don’t want a relationship right now” that I really, truly meant it; the liberty of missing no one. So that’s going to make what I have to say next, not make any sense at all.

I’m joining a dating website. I know, right? Now let me tell you why.

Last weekend – not this past weekend – I was girlfriend N’s house for a “family” dinner. When you get into your late 20s, your friends become more family than your family. I find this concept so increasingly sweet and they are some of the most enjoyable moments of life. So sitting down after dinner, one of the boys in the house was looking through his OK Cupid account. I have never been interested online dating, but I am curious by nature and always wondered how they worked. I asked if I could look through his profile and whatnot. Scrolling through the girls, I found myself making comments to the absolute entertainment of the other five people there. This was like people watching without having to leave the house! (And that's like my favorite hobby next to eating.) Next, I looked through my gay friend’s profiles and matches and then girlfriend C’s.


 I did this for hours and then decided, once others’ curiosities got involved and they started to remark as well, that we need a “book club”. Essentially that they we would all remain on/join an online dating site and then meet once/twice a month to brunch and discuss the ridiculousness that is online dating. The fugs; the crazies; the paper-baggers (like Olympic swimmers: good body, bad face); the weird messages; and the whatever else happens in situations like this. I’m in it for the laughter, the judgment-free judging; the company of friends, and the ego fluffs.

It will be like my going to the grocery store on speed! Last week the clerk greeted me with, “forgive me, but you are stunningly beautiful. ::pause:: Well, don’t forgive me, but you are beautiful”. And then, after picking up the LIFE on Marilyn Monroe, proceeded to tell me that I was far more attractive than her; he said it with such sincerity and it was totally flattering (albeit, unbelievable to me) and (somehow) not creepy. This, unlike the creepy man the week before in another store of the same chain who came up to me as I was nabbing my weekly supply of ice cream and nervously asked where the nearest CVS was; After 2 minutes and 4 mentions of being new to the area, I realized what was going on, but it was too late. The 5’10”, 50 something, slightly sweating, balding man asked me to coffee in the middle of the frozen food aisle.

“No thank you,” I said politely, as I walked away wondering if he was delusional or if I’m just getting ugly. I’m counting that as his Hail Mary; the store closed in five minutes.

However, I am beyond apprehensive to join a site. Embarrassed. Resistant. Just not my cup of tea. I am not interested in online dating – even though PI is convinced this is a rouse that covers up the hope that it all pans out. Hand to the Lord: It’s not.  Allow me to expand, via the three paragraph start to an entry I began about this last week:

The control of one’s on destiny – quite the illusion; kinda like saying you’ll drink vodka and then drive home. Neither is a good idea, nor actually possible without being completely illegal and probably slightly dangerous. I think when we try to control elements in our lives, is when the universe exerts the most force to prove a point that you, in fact, have no say in the matter of your life what-so-ever. And it checks in on the regular.

So I went to a good girlfriend’s wedding this Saturday. Beautiful ceremony; gorgeous bride; handsome groom; so incredibly perfect for one another it makes you believe still in love and fate. And then you had enjoyed ouzo and vodka at the open bar and forgot a little of the night and hope you only sort of made and ass out of yourself – just enough so that you hope they do the same at your wedding and everyone has a good laugh. This, at once, makes me realize that 1. I am completely ill-prepared to be married at the moment and 2. It doesn’t matter anyway; when fate rolls through, you just have to be fate’s bitch. I am not disillusioned from this fact.

I am under the impression that when the universe is ready, he will come and find me. And no matter of searching or online scavenging will speed up that process. Another friend is on an (online) hunt for a husband - and hats of to her - but I all I can think is, she tries so hard and I just don't care and yet we're still in the same single place. Kudos to those who make online dating work for them, but it’s just not for me – it’s not that story that I want. So completely against my character – and the fact that I’m not looking for a relationship (and yes, I’m aware my previous statements admitted that’s beyond my control anyway) – I’m signing up for an online dating site. However, I have no intentions on going on any dates. I’m starting a “Book Club”. 

And I am; I just couldn’t let the idea stay inside my head. And as the proprietor of the invention, I had to take part. I said if N filled out a profile, then I would – since she was hesitant as well. She fulfilled her end, but I’m still bartering. I'm in denial. I'm dragging my feet, avoiding the subject. Damn being a woman of my word! But maybe it will be okay as long as I don’t end up on this list (which was really the catalyst to my idea). People are crazy, guys! - and I think I found the pool they all hang out in. I'm going to observation deck to watch; I'll report back.

End note: Gah! I thought writing about it would make it more appealing. I still don’t want to do this. At all. Hopefully it’s good entertainment…

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Away We Grow

For years I've said that I wish I could donate my hair. "Do it," I was told. My retort was always something to the effect of my hair being too fine to grow out. In kindergarten, on the first day, I was so excited to use scissors for the first time that I cut about four inches from my hair (hey, I looked for paper first). That started a lifetime of short hair for me, as immediately after school I went in to get - and sport - my first mushroom cut. I took a brief hiatus from short  hair when I started growing it out again around age 10. It was a few inches past my shoulders in 5th grade, but from the photos, stringy as all hell.

In 6th grade, I took about six inches off, leaving it above my shoulders. My hair hasn't been below my shoulders since...until now.

A few years back, PE - prior to the whole debacle starting - mentioned that he liked long hair, but I could really pull off short hair (whatever that means). I agree, really. Even though the inverted bob was killed henceforth by a certain Kate, who, even since has ditched for a longer do. When we finally said "okay, lets date for real," I made a deal with him that if he stopped shaving his hair (wayyyy) too short and grow it out, I would grow mine out. And then a weird thing happened: I liked the results. We broke up crashed and burned, but I kept growing my hair out. And it's helped with free drinks; guys seem to be intimidated by girls with short hair. Or maybe they think we're they're gay.

I have always stuck with short hair, some variety of a pixie cut or an inverted bob since high school. In June of 2010 was my last "real" haircut, since then I've been growing it with only maintenance trims for the most part. See below: In order: 2008, Mar 2009 (grown out for my sister's wedding), Fall 2009, Oct 2009, Halloween 2009, Mar 2010, June 2010 (left side), June 2010 (right side), Oct 2010, Mar 2011, June 2011, July 2011, Oct 2011, Apr 2012 (damn right, that's a hobbit hole!), July 2012 and today at work:

If you're paying attention, you saw my old nose. And if you weren't, now you have and welcome back to this paragraph. So for the past few weeks I've been asking myself this question: When you're growing out your hair for no specific reason, how do you know when it's time to stop?  Most people didn't have an answer aside from "keep growing it". But I think, by nature, I'm not a long hair gal and I still cant get used to it touching my back, so growing it and growing it isn't an answer that suits me.

I have, however, found an answer that has; one that I have expressed envy of for years: Donating to Locks of Love. I don't know why this kind of charity is so appealing to me: Maybe because it's so personal: Its a PART of you - like an organ - not money. And the value of how something makes you feel is so much more important than the value of something you can buy.  And so, I have decided that I am going to try my damnest to get this fine, delicate hair to hang on for a year or however long it takes to get ten inches and donate to children in need. Bucket. List. (And I didn't even think to add it because I never thought I could.)  And away we growwwwwwwwwwwwwww...

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Vacation Introspection

"It's times like these you learn to live again; it's times like these you give and give again; it's times like these you learn to love again; it's times like these time and time again..."

Heartbreak and bruises and life trials and tribulations are tough. But there is a richness, a warming, to realize that you've found yourself again. I think that is the most rewarding part. Not the part where you put yourself out there, or the part where you gather to strength to say "that's enough" and save yourself; not even the part where you pull your face from a pillow, dry the tears and move on, but what happens just after. The most rewarding part of the many paths of life and love is that each time something hurts, or you find yourself in pieces, is a time to reclaim who you are, and somehow, become happier each time this transition passes through; And each time, a better version than the last.

I have never been so alone (yet no where near lonely) for so long. I have never been so broke. I have never been so confused - or rather so lacking specific direction. And I have never been quite so happy.

I would almost blame residual vacation smiles, as I just landed late last night from another vacation abroad: A short stay in Mexico filled with amazing experiences and an even more amazing group of strangers new friends. Ziplining, snorkeling in underwater caves and with sea turtles and sting rays, swimming with dolphins and the list goes on. My life is exceeding my bucket list and my queue of places to travel grows. My bucket list expands to include all the things I suddenly grew the guts to do and courage to go so far.

The trip was short: Wednesday to Monday, but it felt like much longer and oh-so-short, all at the same time. I somehow feel changed again, but I don't know how or why. PI said today that it's because it seems that since this year last, I decided to stop letting the burdens of life or my lust for love weigh me down; I pushed back everything and took over the driver's seat. Maybe he's right --- and how I love the wind in my (now much longer) hair. There's something magical in (the cliche) of learning to love yourself.

"...I'm a new day rising; I'm a brand new sky."

Monday, July 2, 2012

That Post Break-Up Thing

And then you reach that awkward moment where you see the last guy you dated in public for the first time and can't find a corner to run to and hide in. Or, you make plans to see the last person you dated so that when (and if) you happen to run into one another again, you can exchange pleasant hellos can carry on like normal humans and not a 5 year old hiding from that weird old man who keeps winking at you 3 pews back. I cho(o)se the latter.

When I first began to date...well, I suppose I should stop myself before I make over-generalizations that aren't historically accurate. I once had a psuedo-stalker, so when that ended, we stopped speaking. After that, the next guy I dated dumped me and married his ex, so we stopped speaking. (Years later he would find me on FB. We now converse there.) The next guy ended amicably and there was no question we would be friends; the relationship always veered more towards friendship anyway. So the first time I had a choice (it was after nearly 3 years together), I said I couldn't be friends. I was absolutely heart broken and couldn't ever see him again. Only we began speaking about 6 months later and were friends for the next 8 years - until he met his now fiance and somehow I became the enemy. Prior to her, at times, I certainly called him my best guy friend, but, I suppose, time and circumstance made him an asshole. Unfair, to say the least. The Ex and I talked for a while after our break-up, but as the past few years have gone by, we don't speak much besides the holiday/birthday wishes and occasional checking in. It's not on purpose, but likely correlates to when he is back in a relationship. The Pink Elephant wasn't ever really a question because, despite having had a great friendship and lots to talk about, the now lady in his life certainly wouldn't welcome me into his (which I understand, considering what he did there). As for HG, refer to the first paragraph and otherwise consider him having fallen off the face of my Earth. Why? I'm not sure; suffice to say that he said he "can't" be friends with exes (though I don't consider him an "ex") and "never has been". Which begs the question: Just how little did I (and the others) mean to you?

Am I taking it too personally? We had something, right? Where does all of that go? As I surveyed the room, I found that most women are willing to keep in touch; it's men that struggle with it.

Men, not women, seem to find it impossible to be friends with exes. But, perhaps, it's not all men's fault. Perhaps it is the women they are with at present. Only, the thing is, is that were it not for the women of the past, they wouldn't be with the girl of the present and - at least for me - they wouldn't be the man they are with her. I find myself often the teacher of men, a sad and increasingly obnoxious obligation the universe has seemed to saddle me (and countless other good-natured women) with: Here dude, have a lesson, the next lady will benefit. So then, I find it so perplexing why future girls would see any intimidation by having a slight presence of the past in the life of their current mate, with a previous partner with whom they were intimately drawn. Because, as time would have it, that intimacy is now dead, so wouldn't the threat be less intimidating than, say, that rando at the bar? He's been there. He's with you now. (Then again, maybe its not the girl and it is just him; or at least how he perceives the situation to appear. File under: Stupid Assumptions.)

But just because that part of the relationship died, it doesn't mean the attraction to the personality died along with. What about the inside jokes? Or car games? Or remember that concert we went to? Remember the time...and...? All those things don't just go away, do they? Sure, people move on and sometimes friends lose touch - but this complete and utter avoidance of an ex or that past psuedo-relationship or that girl who taught me something or the "person that brought me to you" - how and why is it so required for them to disappear so quickly? Am I the only one that finds fault with this? With this complete disregard for someone that once meant something to you? I think we put too much into these things to let that happen - and so often, so easily.

Hurt fades. People move on. But the connections you build with someone that, at least for a time, became your very best friend; for me, they just don't die and fall away. It makes me sad to lose those each time; I put a lot into them. And I think that's the hardest part. And maybe that's why we hide in the corner; to avoid that hurt that you were so easily detachable...or maybe just the sadness that you lost your good friend.

I wish it didn't have to be like that.